After appearing to contradict his original story about the Trump Tower meeting, President Donald Trump has reportedly gotten some blunt advice from his top advisers — just stop talking about it.
This weekend, Donald Trump took to Twitter to respond to reports that claimed he was fearful that son Donald Trump Jr. could be in legal trouble for the June 2016 meeting with Russians, who were promising dirt on Hillary Clinton that had been stolen by Russian hackers. After initially claiming that the meeting had nothing to do with Clinton and instead about Russian adoption sanctions, this weekend’s tweet seemed to admit that Trump’s team went to the meeting in hopes of getting the dirt that was promised. As CNN reported, that change in tune has gotten the attention of Trump’s advisers.
The report cited several sources who claimed that Trump “has been urged to stop tweeting about the 2016 Trump Tower meeting.” While Trump’s public stance on the reason for the meeting has evolved since it was first reported last year, so too has his admission of involvement in crafting a statement on behalf of his son that explained this meeting, the report noted.
“Trump’s attorney Jay Sekulow initially claimed that Trump was not involved in crafting Trump Jr.’s misleading statement,” CNN reported. “White House press secretary Sarah Sanders later said that Trump had ‘weighed in’ on the statement. Then it was revealed in June that Trump’s lawyers had admitted to Mueller in a letter sent last January that Trump had actually ‘dictated’ the statement.”
Donald Trump’s admission that the meeting was actually about getting dirt on Hillary Clinton has led to new speculation that the president may have committed an impeachable offense. As David R. Lurie of Slate noted, Trump’s actions in lying about the meeting and instructing his top lawyer to also lie would appear to constitute obstruction of justice, which current Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh argued during Bill Clinton’s scandal could lead to impeachment.
“By contrast, Sekulow has now admitted that Trump schemed to cause Sekulow to repeatedly and publicly lie about Trump’s role in authoring his son’s false statement about the Trump Tower meeting at a time that the truth was not even known to Sekulow, let alone the public,” Lurie wrote. “Indeed, there is substantial reason to believe that Trump’s purpose in sending Sekulow out to disseminate the false account was not only to mislead to the nation, but also to encourage other witnesses to lie and otherwise impede the ongoing criminal investigation.”
"There is a huge hole in the spin that Team Trump is now attempting on the Trump Tower meeting. It’s this: Trump and his lawyers keep claiming there was nothing wrong with this meeting — but they keep lying about it."https://t.co/067PTYUjhR
— Greg Sargent (@ThePlumLineGS) August 6, 2018
Donald Trump has not directly referenced the Trump Tower meeting since his tweets this weekend.